Skip to content

Inside the Leaders Lab of Greater Charlottesville

LL S1 9-9-22 (9)

What is it like to participate in the Leaders Lab of Greater Charlottesville? Below you'll see some of the activities, speakers, knowledge, insight and connections our past cohorts have shared.

Applications for the Class of 2025 are open through June 28, 2024. Now's the time to apply!

The Leaders Lab brings together current and aspiring leaders at all ages and career stages for active, experiential learning. We offer leadership training through a community lens – focusing on the City of Charlottesville and Albemarle County, VA.

  • Develop skills you can use right away at work
  • Learn local history and current community issues
  • Make friends and connect with a diverse cohort
  • Learn how people are working together on local issues
  • Practice tools for community problem-solving
  • Develop a personal leadership plan

We meet one full day per month for nine months, September through May, at various locations around Charlottesville.

LL S6 2-10-23 (32)
LL24 Session 2 Oct 2023 (2) sq
LL24 Session 4 (5) sq

Leadership Training Content

Leadership Development Curriculum

  • What does leadership mean to you?
  • Mindfulness in leadership
  • Inclusion and belonging
  • Leading from your values
  • Adaptive leadership
  • Conflict resolution
  • Principled negotiation
  • Ethical decision-making

Community Problem-Solving Curriculum

  • Higher Ground – Creating a group covenant for aspirations, norms and behavior
  • Community engagement
  • Consensus building
  • Equitable collaboration
  • Asset based community development
  • Group facilitation

Past Speakers, 2023-2024

Anthony Woodard, CEO, Woodard Properties
Abdi Somo (Leaders Lab Class of 2023), Chief Administrative Officer, UVA Medical Center
Amber L Smith, COO, The Bridge Progressive Arts Initiative
Andrea Johnson, Owner and Founder, The Intentional Optimist, LLC
Anna Mendez, Executive Director, The Haven
Brian Hunter, Executive Director, Leadership Institute & Director, System Strategy, UVA Health
Carmelita Wood, President, Fifeville Neighborhood Association
Chris Virgilio (LL23), Director of Real Estate Development, Woodard Properties
Courtney Cacatian, Executive Director, Charlottesville Albemarle Convention and Visitors Bureau
Cristine Nardi, Executive Director, Center for Nonprofit Excellence
David Auble, Professor, Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, School of Medicine, University of Virginia
DeTeasa Gathers, Co-Founder, Descendants of Enslaved Communities at UVA (DEC)
Eric Irizarry, Director of Equity, Family, School and Community Relations, Albemarle County Public Schools
Frank Dukes, Distinguished Fellow, Institute for Engagement and Negotiation (IEN) at the University of Virginia
Jason Lineen, Chief Strategy Officer, UVA Health
Jessica Tiller, Owner, Estate Planning of Charlottesville
Louis Nelson, Vice Provost Academic Outreach & Professor, Architectural History, University of Virginia
Megan Watson, Owner & Founder, Sliced Cake Bar
Mike Foreman, Special Projects Manager, Institute for Engagement and Negotiation (IEN) at the University of Virginia
Molly Harlow, VIG Assistant Director, Leadership Development, Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service
Natasha Gray, Global Lead, People Resource Groups, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, S&P
Olivia Branch, Member Relations, Events, and Communications Manager, Keswick Hall
Rock Watson, Owner & Founder, Sliced Cake Bar
Sam Sanders (LL23), City Manager, City or Charlottesville
Scott Hamler, Owner, 4Z Digital
Sunshine Mathon, Executive Director, Piedmont Housing Alliance
Suzanne G. Lynn (LL23), Management Consultant & Executive Coach, SGL Consulting
Teira E. Farley (LL23), Director of Communications + Engagement, Community Investment Collaborative
Tracy M. Downs, Chief Diversity & Community Engagement Officer, UVA Health
Zakiya Toirova, Owner and Director, Loving Arms Care Inc

LL cohorts 23-24